Each individual, society, or social group has a code of conduct or ethics which they live by. Like most societies, working places, organizations, or social groups, practitioners of the search engine optimization (SEO) part of the Internet also has a code of ethics, known in a number of quarters as “SEO code of ethics”.
Code of ethics is a spoken or unspoken principle of right or wrong, or both (right and wrong) that is practiced by an individual or a group of people; it is also known as a system of rules or principles that govern morality and acceptable forms of conduct—more like a political party or religion.
To some extent, some site owners, bloggers, and SEO practitioners understand what the SEO code of ethics entails; however, not all site owner, bloggers, and SEO practitioners actually practice safe SEO which can be enforced by adhering to the SEO code of ethics.
It’s unfortunate that in an attempt to achieve a goal by any means necessary, some site owners, bloggers, and SEO practitioners use “whatever-it-takes” or unethical approaches that are biased toward surfers, search engines, or even their clients.
Although the whole Internet industry likely doesn’t have an official or somewhat unified SEO code of ethics, the following principles or rules of SEO practice should be strictly adhered to in order to make internet surfers, search engines, and clients feel safe and valued on the Internet:
1. Don’t take other people’s work without their consent and publish or present it as yours.
2. Create clean and understandable content for internet surfers; ensure that any information crawled by search engines must correspond with the visible content of each page.
3. Ensure that your site content is not misleading and offensive and visitors are protected when surfing your site. Any user’s search phrase should be able to match the site content or search result displayed after a query.
4. Be honest with your visitors or client and don’t intentionally use methods, systems, or technologies to trick search engines. Tricking search engines could get your site removed from their indexes and results pages.
5. Be fair and unbiased to all clients and treat them equally.
6. Keep your visitors’ or clients’ information confidential and away from public view, except if your visitors or clients give you permission.
7. Always look for an amicable solution for any disputes that may arise between you and your visitors or between visitors or clients themselves.
8. Don’t deceive people by lying about your skills and making false promises or guarantees to teach or provide so-called “guaranteed methods” that don’t work.
9. Don’t deliberately disregard the laws or rules and contract agreements that bind you and search engines or web directories. Simply put: don’t violate search engine laws which are the law of the Internet land!
The SEO code of ethics, which can be regarded as “the good principles of SEO practice”, is a way of SEO practice that aims to promote peace and erase all forms of evil, spamming, deception, scamming, and cheating on the internet. Learn to abide by SEO code of ethics and always remember that, whatever anyone does to harm surfers or search engines would only last in the short term. It wouldn’t last for long, longer, or indefinitely.